Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. Public Domain.
Why is legacy so important?
Clarence Still, a local New Jersey historian and descendant of abolitionist William Still, spent his lifetime answering this question.
In 1989, Still worked diligently to stop real estate developers from tearing down the Peter Mott House, a station on the Underground Railroad. Then the home was no more than a crumbling wooden structure that was in the way of development. But for Still, it was an important part of telling the story of African-American resistance to slavery in the 18th Century.
Today, the home is a museum. For the past eleven years, Still and other members of the Lawnside Historical Society worked to preserve and maintain the Peter Mott House. The Lawnside Historical Society has also worked to preserve the legacy of Lawnside, the state’s oldest African-American incorporated municipality.
And every year, Still hosted the Still Family Reunion–bringing William Still’s descendants together from all over the United States.
Still passed away on Friday in his home. However, Still’s legacy as a historian and preserver of African-American history lives on.